Framing tasks correctly can greatly improve your productivity. The wording and medium used can either psyche you up or drain the energy from you.
Here we go:
1. A task should be clear.
Vagueness and productivity do not go well together. If you have to, then make specific sub-tasks.
Sub-tasks help in breaking down large overwhelming tasks into small and manageable bits that you can accomplish one at a time. When breaking down a task, think of the steps you will take to complete the task and write the steps as the sub-tasks.
You could break down a task such as clean the house into: clean the utensils, take out the trash and vacuum the carpet.
Smaller tasks help in keeping you motivated and crossing them off the list helps in feeling productive.
2. Be concise but verbose
Write exactly what you will accomplish when the task is completed but write in detail how you plan on accomplishing the task. This includes how, when, how much, where and everything else that may be relevant. The more details you give the better but don’t go overboard.
This helps in that you don’t have to think about the details when it comes to performing the task so it becomes easier as some weight is lifted off.
3. Keep it simple
I believe simplicity should be the golden rule for everything.
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” ~ Leonardo da Vinci
I found that phrasing a task simply, made me twice as motivated to do the task. Simplicity comes in different forms, it could be the means you choose to perform a task or the environment or even the time to schedule it. At times we make the mistake of waiting for perfect conditions to do something and it makes us obsessive over the finer details which in reality don’t matter.
Taking a simple approach can tremendously improve your productivity and change/improve your life for the better.
4. Categorize your tasks according to priority
This is very important especially if you have many tasks. It helps keep your mind focused on the most important and urgent task. It also goes a long way to motivate you when you cross off those tasks from your to-do list.
A simplified way to go about it is to have a different list of urgent tasks.
Then in the different tasks, you could assign a numerical weight on the estimated time it will take to complete it and break it down to sub-tasks if necessary.
5. Get a good app to write tasks.
Last but not least, this helps in organizing your tasks for accessibility and to remind you when a task is due. I could also recommend writing the tasks down by hand but it has a limitation on accessibility and reminder capabilities. Apps also come in handy if it is a shared task.
As you can probably guess already, Wunderlist is my all-time favourite. It allows you to create tasks and sub-tasks that you can share or assign to a colleague. You can set a due date and a reminder date and time as well. The user interface is very intuitive and it has a very seamless user experience.
There are other apps that are quite good as well, my point being: get an app that works for you.
Bonus: Remember to schedule time to write down the tasks.
All the best in your journey to better productivity. I hope these tips help you in achieving your goals.